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If one were to give a one-liner to address the question ‘Is IB worth it,’ one would say something along the lines of this quote by Jordon Peterson: ‘There is nothing more powerful than someone who is articulate and someone who can think and speak.’
While it is true that the IB program has been deemed one of the most daunting high school courses, it has many perks. The Diploma program offers more than just a better GPA for university applications. This article talks about everything that IB can do for you. Why should you trust the information provided in this article? Well, one reason is that this article is written by an IB graduate. Read on to find the second reason. Hopefully, you won’t need it by the time you scroll down to the end of the page.
Need convincing for taking up IB? Check out what Nika has to say about IB.
IB And Your Career
First things first. We are all doing this for the long run. So will the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program directly impact your career? Simple answer: NO! Doing the IB Diploma will not have a ‘direct’ impact on your career. However, what it will do is give you a set of principles. IB helps you develop a work ethic. It is but a teaser to the effort one needs to put in to make it in the actual work. Opting to do the IB courses is like preponing the adult hustle. Why would one what to prepone adulting, you may ask? Well, for those who want to ride the chaotic wave of life, the sooner you start hustling, the more advantage you will have. Before you quit reading this post because of the responsibility aspect, hear me out! IB is not that dreadful. Yes, a plethora of assignments require timely submissions, but that does not mean you will not have any time for other activities. That’s the beauty of IBO.
They have integrated all the fun activities students can think of in their CAS module. CAS is an abbreviation for Creativity, Activity, and Service. Your institution will organize events to help you discover your interests outside the academic field. For instance, the institution with which I underwent the diploma program organized bi-annual adventure trips. These trips had us climb the mountains of Northern India, reconstruct houses in rural areas and explore uncharted territories across the globe. Since it is a compulsory module, your institution needs help finding its way out. Here’s the best part: your teachers cannot take away your fun time to give a lecture!
IB And Your Intellectual Voice
IB Diploma helps students develop an intellectual voice. They offer holistic learning in such a way that the students are compelled to look at life as an intellectual. But is it essential to be an intellectual? What does it even mean to be one? Being intellectual means, you are not easily influenced by superficial knowledge. It is a term coined for those who dig deeper into things that may seem straightforward. Intellectuals are not gullible. They form their opinions after thorough analysis and only fall for some things. Having such quality in today’s flashy world is a must. It keeps you sane and separates you from the dense crowd which falls for senseless fads. Now, I do not intend to project hate upon these people. I am merely pointing out that we as humans do a lot of activities that we don’t even enjoy because they are the trend! These activities are not only a waste of our time but are also harming the environment. For example, fast fashion, which is heavily based on replicating the ‘new look’ of a celebrity, is making fashion unanimous and damaging the earth! Not to mention the exploitation of labor to keep fast fashion cheap. As an IB student, you will discuss such topics in your Theory of Knowledge classes. Again these classes are not lectures but debates wherein everyone is allowed to put forth an opinion or question the thinking of their professor. In fact, asking your professor is encouraged in IB as it helps the students find their voice.
IB And Your Voice
Every country has its own education system. To a large extent, this education system is skewed toward what that particular country values. For example, the history books of India have been written in such a way that it glorifies Indian Culture. And there is nothing wrong with that. Being patriotic is a good virtue if one feels immensely for the land in which that individual has been born. However, the history books of Pakistan portray the historical events in a completely different right. India and Pakistan share a lot of historical events. It is almost impossible to find which country has projected history in the most pristine way. The history books of IB remain unbiased while talking about historical events. Most of the lectures put forth the event and encouraged the students to give their analysis. This not only helps the students' learn' about history but also teaches them to 'interpret' what has happened. The professor's job is to make sure that the students' interpretation is not distorted but is in the vicinity of how historians look at those events.
Moreover, only some lectures end with a concrete conclusion. Most history classes end on an open-ended note. Pick out the ending of Inspection by Christopher Nolan to visualize what I am talking about. You get the point! The students not only take back knowledge but also a particular way of thinking that helps them analyze what went wrong in the past and how it can be avoided. This method encourages Albert Einstein's view on education. He believed that one's brain should not be a warehouse of facts but a factory churning ideas. The current spread of COVID-19 will likely be discussed in a manner that makes such an event unlikely to repeat.
IB And The Tangential Shift
Students in middle school are a certain way. They are pure potential. They can be anything that they want to be. At the same time, they are carefree and take life one day at a time (which is precisely how it should be!). IB program helps these students channelize their immense potential. It gives you a push to go up a tangent. One way it is done is by completing various assignments that an IB student must do in all the courses. These Internal Assessments are holistic and offer students an insight into how their education fits in the real world. Initially, they are a pain in the ass as they seem like extra work. But as one begins to see the actual application of their subjects, they get a unique perspective about the world.
Doing IB For A Creative Career
For all the creatives out there. I know what you must be thinking. 'We are people of the heart. We don't need an intellectual impetus to move forward in life. If you are indeed thinking about this tangent, I would like you to introduce my second reason for doing the IB Diploma. Being creative myself, IBDP helped me to enhance my art. I always knew that I wanted to materialize my creative energy. IB provided me with the key to do so. How exactly?' How you do one thing is how you do everything, a quote by T. Harv Eker is my answer. One needs to put in a diligent effort to graduate from the IB program. This dynamic way of working is reflected in one's art as well. Those who belong to the artistic field start churning out multi-facet pieces of art: the one which makes humanity think while being appealing. Furthermore, IBO offers subjects like Design Technology and Visual Arts, which help students to refine their craft.
IB And Your Highest Skill
If you belong to the majority, then you are one of those who have no clue what to do with life. That is how people your age should be. We are all generalists who want to do so much but must be aware of what should be done. Once again, the IB program offers subjects from 6 different groups.
These groups are:
- Group 1: Studies in Language and Literature.
- Group 2: Language Acquisition.
- Group 3: Individuals and Societies.
- Group 4: Experimental Sciences.
- Group 5: Mathematics.
- Group 6: The Arts
There are different courses within each subject group. Students are required to take one course from each subject group. This helps their inquisitive mind dive deep into the discipline mentioned above. Since they undergo rigorous academic training in all subject groups, they develop a deep understanding of the subject they are naturally inclined towards. Having such insight in high school is vital in forging their future career paths.
After Graduating IB
So what will you look like after graduating high school with an IB Diploma? If you do it right, you will become a young adult with solid analytical thinking who will have mastered the three most crucial skills required to be a well-functioning adult and beyond: the ability to think, speak, and read. While it is true that many high school courses offer the same, doing the IB Diploma course will surely expand your bandwidth of perception. You would be speaking with the power of empowering the oppressed. Your language will be such that it helps others shape their voice while allowing you to state your point. Your ability to read will include more than what is written on the page but also let you read the subtext. Your thinking pattern will help you work in your best interest, and your best interest will be forged so that it will liberate others.
Let me wrap this article on an honest note. When I was undergoing my IB diploma, there were times when I wanted to quit. I saw kids my age having a good time while I had to write essays of 2000 words. When I look back, I feel great about the sacrifices I made in the past because they have helped me reach closer to my ideal self. What helped me pass the IB Program was relying on trustworthy resources. Having the right resources and utilizing them at the right time is one of the most important tricks that you need to master for your getting your IB Diploma. How can one do that? Well, that is a topic for another blog. I suggest you check out the free resources made available by Nail IB! Do check out their guide to acing an Extended Essay!
Nail IB works as your hustle partner. Their resources are of tremendous help. Make sure to check out their student bundles to enhance your performance.